How can digital activists harness new technologies, tools, and platforms to be as effective as possible in their work?

Digital organizing has arguably been at the heart of the recent protests in the Arab world. In the case of Egypt, a successful campaign run by online activists contributed to bringing hundreds of thousands of people to protest and force the resignation of President Mubarak. Clay Shirky, author of Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, wrote: “We are living in the middle of the largest increase in expressive capability in the history of the human race. More people can communicate more things to more people than has ever been possible in the past, and the size and speed of this increase… makes the change unprecedented.” We can expect that any issue worth demonstrating about in the future will be organized online and its success will weigh heavily on how well the Internet and other technological tools are leveraged.

Last week Movements.org released a new strategy guide for its constituents in How to Build and Sustain a 21st Century Movement. In the fall TechChange will offer an online certificate course entitled Global Innovations for Digital Organizing: New Media Tactics for Democratic Change.

In an effort to help shape these activities, TechChange will be joining forces with Movements.org on Friday, June 3 from 1-2pm EST for a live Twitter chat. Our two organizations are eager to hear your ideas, examples, and questions about the current state of the field and what we can expect in the years to come. Below are some questions we are particularly interested in:

Questions:

  • What are the most useful digital tools and platforms available to online organizers today?
  • What are some of the biggest barriers preventing these tools from being as effective as they can be in a given context?
  • What are the most significant unmet needs that digital activists have today?
  • How will digital organizing change over the course of the next 5, 10, 15, 20 years?

Hashtag: #do11 (digital organizing)

Be sure to participate in the chat by logging on twitter on June 3rd between 1 and 2pm EST. Please remember: use the #do11 hashtag, (short for digital organizing 2011), introduce yourself, stay on topic, be respectful and have fun.

Have a question but can’t attend the chat?

Mention @AYM and/or @TechChange before the chat with any questions you have or issues you are interested in exploring – or just comment right here on TechChange Blog. We’ll do our best to include this feedback in the chat.

Sample Tweet:

Join @AYM & @TechChange for a twitter chat on the future of digital organizing #do11 (Jun 3rd 1-2pm) (add link to this blog post)

Tweet you later!

The TechChange Team


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